Featured Designer: Jody Rice September 29 2020 1 Comment
All images courtesy of Jody Rice of Satsuma Street
We were on the lookout to add some fresh, modern cross stitch projects to our shop and found Jody Rice of Satsuma Street. Her work is just what we were looking for—colorful, whimsical, and happy. We were ready to get stitching!
Now, let's get to know Jody!
Jen: Where were you born and raised?
Jody: I grew up in the beautiful San Francisco Bay Area.
Jen: Tell us about your stitching journey. How did you learn to cross stitch?
Jody: Growing up I spent many weekends with my Grandma, who was a big crafter and needleworker, she always had some kind of cool project going. She really got me interested in all the needle arts, including cross stitch and embroidery.
Jen: How did Satsuma Street come to be?
Jody: Around 2013 I was working in the film industry (I have an MFA in animation), but I was feeling creatively uninspired by that work, so when I was in between movies, I would work on craft projects. I enjoyed doing counted cross stitch, but I found the kits and designs available at the big box craft stores were totally not my style. So with my background in design, I figured I would just make my own patterns, and Satsuma Street was born! I quickly realized there was a lack of modern designs in the cross stitch market and a lot of people like me who were looking for something different to stitch.
Jen: Tell us about the process for designing your patterns. What are your inspirations?
Jody: I love Mid-Century graphic design; artists like Mary Blair, Charley Harper and Vera Neumann are my design idols. So I’m inspired by their playful artwork, but I would say color is the most important part of my design approach. I really love putting together unusual, vibrant color combos, and often I’ll just start with a color palette and see what ideas spring forth from that.
Once I have a color palette and a sketch, then I have to translate that idea into a cross stitch chart, which is an interesting challenge, because you’re constrained by the grid format. But rather than try to fight that and make something realistic, I try to embrace it and lean in to the chunky blocks of color. Once the chart is ready, I stitch a model, and often make changes as I stitch until I’m happy with it. A design can take anywhere from 2 – 8 weeks from start to finish, depending on the complexity.
Jen: Complete this sentence. When I am not stitching, I am ...
Jody: Reading, walking, or snuggling my two cats.
Jen: What is your worst stitching habit?
Jody: I’m terrible about keeping my floss organized while I’m stitching! It’s usually just in a big messy pile on the arm of the couch. It’s also stuck to all my clothes, I’ve definitely left the house with a big piece of floss stuck to my butt more than once.
Jen: What is one stitching notion that you can’t live without?
Jody: I love Tulip’s Tapestry Needles. I always used to buy cheap needles because I thought it couldn’t make much difference, but now I’m a convert! They are so well made and long lasting, stitching with them is a pleasure.
We are thrilled to have Satsuma Street charts and kits in our collection. You can also follow Jody on Instagram for some stitchy inspirations.
What will you cross stitch first?